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Phillips 66 Aerostars help promote scholarships for women

The aerobatic demonstration team strapped I Hart Flying Foundation founder Rachelle Spector, corporate pilot Kim Kissh, and student pilot Lyndse Costabile into their Extra 300L aerobatic aircraft to celebrate during a flight departing from Wisconsin’s Appleton International Airport, a few miles north of “The World’s Greatest Airshow” in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, July 28.

The flight coincided with what would normally be an EAA WomenVenture group photo opportunity before coronavirus crowd-size restrictions scratched it.

Spector, a type-rated jet pilot, has given away more than $100,000 in flight raining scholarships through the I Hart Flying Foundation since its 2017 inception. She said the foundation has experienced four years of “unparalleled success” with themed scholarships and announced the next theme as “Fueling Flight Through Harts of Might,” which begins August 2.

Phillips 66 Aerostars pilots Harvey “Boss” Meek, Gerry “Fossil” Molidor, and Paul “Rocket” Hornick said they were happy to be participating on the airshow circuit again after a coronavirus pandemic-induced year away from airshow audiences. The team uses aerobatic performances to build excitement for the next generation of aviators and to highlight inclusion.

The female pilots experienced high-adrenaline aerobatics including a loop, an aileron roll, and a head-snapping 360-degrees-per-second point roll that caught at least one of the trio off-guard. Kissh vowed to begin aerobatic training on the spot after Meek handed her control of the Extra for the loop.

“There’s no greater feeling than giving back, when two forces of the industry come together to drive deeper impact for the growth of aviation,” said Lindsey Grant, with Phillips 66.

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